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Questions tagged [power-tools]

Tools that use some form of power other than muscle, usually electricity.

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27 votes
3 answers
11k views

When, if ever, is it safe to use gloves with power tools?

I don't use gloves when operating my power tools, but I know a few people who do--for instance, when operating a router with two hands (not in a router table). Is this safe, and if so, what other ...
rob's user avatar
  • 18.8k
23 votes
5 answers
6k views

When should I use a Jointer vs. a Planer?

I am fairly new to woodworking and just starting to outfit my shop with power tools. One area that I find confusing is the use case for a jointer vs. a planer. Both tools seem to have very similar ...
JohnFx's user avatar
  • 727
23 votes
5 answers
2k views

In what cases is it useful to have more than one of the same tool?

For the purposes of this question, please note that I am not asking for general advice on buying tools, but rather, I'm trying to identify the cases in which it may be practical and useful to have two ...
rob's user avatar
  • 18.8k
20 votes
6 answers
8k views

How do I make a drill hole the same depth every time?

My drill press doesn't have a "stop". How do I make a drill hole the same depth every time?
NipFu's user avatar
  • 1,875
19 votes
7 answers
21k views

What can I do to eliminate drift when cutting with my bandsaw?

I recently purchased my first Band saw and am loving its versatility for making curved cuts even in thick wood. However, when it comes to situations where I need a precisely straight line, for example ...
JohnFx's user avatar
  • 727
19 votes
4 answers
52k views

How should I store the batteries of my cordless drill?

I have a nice cordless drill that came with two rechargeable batteries. However, there are times when life gets in the way and I'm not using the drill at all over the course of several months. When I ...
drs's user avatar
  • 3,631
15 votes
6 answers
13k views

Why are keyed drill chucks still available for modern tools?

Barring support for older tools why are keyed chucks still manufactured? Hopefully not just in my own ignorance but I view keyless chucks as just a useful equivalent without being tethered to the need ...
Matt's user avatar
  • 20.2k
14 votes
9 answers
53k views

How to cut the centre out of a large round of wood

I have a large round of wood (horizontal slice of a tree) which is about 20 inches across (circle diameter) and 8-9 inches deep. I want to take the centre out of the wood, either by cutting a circle ...
AntonyM's user avatar
  • 315
14 votes
5 answers
25k views

In what situations would I use a belt sander versus a random orbit sander?

I own both a belt sander and random orbit sander. I've found that as I've worked on improving my finishing technique, I will oftentimes go for the random orbit sander over any other sanding ...
Peter Grace's user avatar
  • 4,037
13 votes
5 answers
4k views

Why does direction matter when using an electric router?

I was watching an episode of the Wood Whisperer on YouTube, and he was making a frame for a mirror. At one point in the video he was going to put a round-over on the frame and was using an electric ...
user avatar
13 votes
4 answers
48k views

What can I do if I lose the chuck key for my drill?

The string holding my key to the drill broke and I didn't notice at first. I have a couple of drills so I don't have to change the bits often. I am aware that I can buy a new key for my drill but that ...
Matt's user avatar
  • 20.2k
12 votes
5 answers
40k views

How do you make mortise and tenon joints using power tools?

There is already a question about making mortise and tenon joints using hand tools. It would be nice to also catalog the various ways of making mortise and tenon joints using power tools. Wherever a ...
rob's user avatar
  • 18.8k
12 votes
4 answers
19k views

Is an oscillating multi-tool a good option for detailed sanding?

I am just wondering if these tools would be we suited for small spaces and sanding in corners.
rgmrtn's user avatar
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12 votes
3 answers
2k views

How do I choose a drill press?

A drill press seems such an essential tool -- even outside of fine woodworking I have found need for it a great many times -- but as I dive into woodworking I see even more of a need for it. The ...
Dan Wolfgang's user avatar
12 votes
3 answers
4k views

What are the advantages of band-saws with multiple speeds?

I'm currently thinking about buying a band-saw. While searching in my price range, I found that some models offer a single speed, others 2 and some even 3 speeds. I'm fairly new to band-saws and I ...
Maxime Morin's user avatar
  • 2,410
11 votes
3 answers
11k views

How to soundproof the Wood Shop?

I hold a small (15qm) Wood Shop at the basement, where I have the classic power tools like: a miter saw, a bench saw and a wood drill press and some other hand power tools. There is a real issue ...
Tiberiu C.'s user avatar
11 votes
3 answers
8k views

Can I really use my table saw as a disc sander?

When looking through a tool catalog from the 1950s I noticed that Shopmaster sold a sanding disc for their table saw. I looked around online and found discs that fit my saw still available, e.g. here ...
Jason C's user avatar
  • 5,603
11 votes
4 answers
1k views

Is it better to let the tool run or stop in-between cuts?

When I started woodworking, I used to setup my tool, do a cut, stop my tool, re-position my piece (or take another one), start my tool, do another cut, stop, etc. Today, I find myself leaving the ...
Maxime Morin's user avatar
  • 2,410
11 votes
3 answers
7k views

How can I make an inset cutting board handle?

How is this cutting board handle possible? The only way I can think of is that it was done by hand with a gouge, but it looks too clean for that. Can an inset handle, such as the one pictured below, ...
Jordan Bentley's user avatar
11 votes
2 answers
4k views

Can you overwork an impact driver?

I recently got a 20v driver and impact driver set. Never had an impact driver before but I cannot imagine life without it. It makes it really hard to split wood by over driving and I love that. But I ...
Matt's user avatar
  • 20.2k
11 votes
1 answer
1k views

Tungsten Carbide grades

A lot of different tools from saw blades to router bits use different carbide "C" grades. I read and there are types like C2, C3, K10. What is the difference between all these? A description on each ...
Ljk2000's user avatar
  • 3,106
10 votes
4 answers
15k views

How to clean clogged sandpaper

I recently bought a belt sander and noticed that while using it stationary it can get clogged (on a certain region) real fast. The sharpness of the area is not lost but it's just clogged with wood ...
Andrei Rînea's user avatar
10 votes
5 answers
23k views

What is an electric planer (hand tool) good for?

This may be an opinion question... Someone recently gave me an old electric planer similar to And I'm wondering whether there is any task where it would really have an advantage over other tools ...
keshlam's user avatar
  • 9,211
10 votes
3 answers
64k views

How do I cut thick wood with a jigsaw?

I have wood that is about 1 3/4" thick, but I need to cut a circle out of it. I only have a jigsaw and a drill to work with (I only do light woodworking). Is there anyway to do this. Unfortunately, I ...
electricviolin's user avatar
10 votes
6 answers
6k views

Why don't most modern drill presses use some form of VFD instead of manual belt-changes to adjust speed?

I was honestly surprised to see that most modern drill presses still use belts and pulleys (and the manual changing of them) to accomplish variable speeds. Does this design offer certain benefits that ...
Wilco's user avatar
  • 451
10 votes
2 answers
4k views

What types of table saw cuts cannot be made with a riving knife installed?

Similar to When is it not possible or not practical to use a blade guard?, what types of cuts require the riving knife (and blade guard) to be removed?
rob's user avatar
  • 18.8k
9 votes
6 answers
3k views

Best sander for rustic wood

I want to build a rustic wood chair. My first rustic wood furniture ever. Doing rustic wood is really complicated for me because the wood is very uneven like this: What sander should I use for ...
Lakatos Gyula's user avatar
9 votes
7 answers
22k views

Can I use a 6mm shank in a 1/4 inch collet?

There is a nice bit I would love to get/use but it uses a 6mm shank. My router uses 1/4 inch shank. It is a 0.014 inch difference...is it a bad idea to get this? Is there an adapter or something if ...
Ljk2000's user avatar
  • 3,106
9 votes
5 answers
11k views

What tools/methods I could use to create a small circular recess?

I have a pallet style table that I am building. I have a plate of contoured glass that will sit on top of it. To discourage it's movement off the table I was going to put some rubber feet on the base ...
Matt's user avatar
  • 20.2k
9 votes
3 answers
2k views

Body positioning while using a jointer

I just got a old Beaver 4" jointer that looks very similar to this one. I used it for the first time this weekend and it was awesome. I am wondering though if I was doing something inherently wrong ...
Matt's user avatar
  • 20.2k
9 votes
2 answers
3k views

What tools can I use for carving

I am new to woodworking and want to get started with carving on woods. I bought some hand tools, but I am open for power tools. Please suggest any and all tools, hand and powered, that are really ...
gpuguy's user avatar
  • 191
9 votes
1 answer
419 views

When is it not possible or not practical to use a blade guard?

Many people don't use the blade guards on their saws. Sometimes the reasoning is not very good, such as, "it blocks my view." But there are many very legitimate reasons to remove the blade guard. What ...
rob's user avatar
  • 18.8k
9 votes
2 answers
2k views

Hitachi electric miter saw leaves a strange, slightly undulating non-square edge

I own a Hitachi C10FCE2 10-inch miter saw, it is my first miter saw. I'm a woodworking beginner but learning fast. I recently installed a "Makita A-93681 10-Inch 80 Tooth Micro Polished Mitersaw Blade"...
JupiterJesus's user avatar
8 votes
3 answers
13k views

Orbital sander papers coming off

I'm own a Black&Decker orbital sander (can be found here, using hook and loop papers), which is generally a good tool except for the fact that the sanding papers fall off before their sand becomes ...
MeLight's user avatar
  • 449
8 votes
5 answers
11k views

Are there any differences between jigsaws, sabre saws, or scroll saws?

From what I was taught, a scroll saw is a table top saw, with a thin blade used for scrolling work. Though I've also heard these tools referred to as jigsaws. Manufacturers also offer portable saws, ...
Tester101's user avatar
  • 231
8 votes
2 answers
2k views

How to determine if a router bit is safe to use?

I recently started using my router table and read both here and on the net about router safety. That covered using the tool itself. Now reading the question about exceeding bit RPM I realize I never ...
Matt's user avatar
  • 20.2k
8 votes
1 answer
220 views

Winter and my tools

It is getting cold here in Wisconsin, winter is coming. I have always taken in my battery tools. Because most people should know that lithium and freezing temps, do not mix very well. But what about ...
Ljk2000's user avatar
  • 3,106
8 votes
3 answers
7k views

How do I remove a stuck router bit from a plunge router?

I am borrowing a friend's "Skil 1823 Type 1 Plunge Router", and I am having some trouble removing the router bit that was already in it. Everything online has said that removing the collet nut should ...
Daniel Brown's user avatar
7 votes
2 answers
2k views

How do I know when it is too cold to work outside?

My woodworking has been at a standstill during the winter months. The main reasons for that are I no longer have stable surfaces to work with since I work outside I need to wear warm clothing which ...
Matt's user avatar
  • 20.2k
7 votes
2 answers
5k views

Are there any best practices when using dado blades or stack?

I recently got an 8" dado set for my table saw, and was a little nervous about using it without the normal safety equipment I usually have in place (primarily a riving knife), especially since they've ...
Doresoom's user avatar
  • 4,359
7 votes
2 answers
345 views

In what cases is it NOT useful to have more than one of the same tool?

I want to take In what cases is it useful to have more than one of the same tool? and flip it around to find out what tools are NOT useful in multiples. In other words, I'm now looking for cases in ...
rob's user avatar
  • 18.8k
7 votes
2 answers
2k views

How does a variable speed control mechanism work?

To change speeds on many drill presses and lathes, the user needs to turn off the machine, and manually move the belts between a variety of pulleys. On a machine with variable speed control, the user ...
lars's user avatar
  • 2,696
7 votes
2 answers
1k views

How heavy a piece of wood can my lathe handle?

I have the Jet 1642 EVS. One of the nice features that I bought it for is offbed turning, the head stock moves and I can turn bowls and platters greater than the 16" diameter bed limit. However, I ...
bowlturner's user avatar
  • 16.1k
7 votes
4 answers
10k views

My jigsaw is terrible at cutting vertically through a simple 2x4

I made some Canexican saw horses for a friend. I liked the design feature that made it so the 2x4 sat in a perfect recess and could be changed out easily. I was cutting the angles with the jigsaw, ...
Matt's user avatar
  • 20.2k
6 votes
5 answers
1k views

What is the difference between a worm and sidewinder drive circular saws?

I didn't even know this was a thing. Then I read comments in this question Worm drive saws are long and unwieldy for all but the burliest of men. I found them a real pain to work with. A Makita is ...
Matt's user avatar
  • 20.2k
6 votes
3 answers
4k views

Are there techniques to sand small parts on a benchtop belt sander?

I often find myself attempting to sand small pieces of wood (1"x1"x1" or less) on a benchtop belt sander. In the past I've used pliers to hold the piece being sanded, but not always with success. ...
NipFu's user avatar
  • 1,875
6 votes
2 answers
12k views

Are there any tips when working a large surface with an handheld electric planer?

A friend got me an electric hand held planer that he thought I could use to help clean pallet boards faster then what I was doing. For the most part it has sat in the box. Until recently though when I ...
Matt's user avatar
  • 20.2k
6 votes
1 answer
300 views

Makita router straight guide... not straight?

I recently got a makita RP2301FC plunge router. I'm a hobbyist and this is my first router. Today I tried using it for the first time when i noticed the straight guide isn't straight. When I push it ...
NirIzr's user avatar
  • 259
6 votes
1 answer
1k views

Random Orbital Sander rounds table edges

My Bosh GEX 125-1 AE Random Orbital Sander tends to round all my edges. I am sanding a table top and all points are now curved down, instead of straight. I believe this is happening because the ...
mFeinstein's user avatar
6 votes
4 answers
1k views

What is an accurate and safe way to piece together wood with a rhombus cross section?

I am interested in making a bunch of Penrose tiles. Please note that the triangles and half circle on the figures shouldn't be there, they are for alignment purposes only. One of the tiles is a ...
fred's user avatar
  • 161